Category Archives: 7 Holonics and Life

Coronavirus tips.

#Coronavirus #covid-19

Inform yourself … but thisinformation circulating the internet is interesting. Useful points include:

* practice breathing – if short of breath, check for other symptoms.

* drink water (warm, not cold) frequently.

From member of the Stanford hospital board. This is their feedback for now on Corona virus:

The new Coronavirus may not show sign of infection for many days. How can one know if he/she is infected? By the time they have fever and/or cough and go to the hospital, the lung is usually 50% Fibrosis and it’s too late.

Taiwan experts provide a simple self-check that we can do every morning. Take a deep breath and hold your breath for more than 10 seconds. If you complete it successfully without coughing, without discomfort, stiffness or tightness, etc., it proves there is no Fibrosis in the lungs, basically indicates no infection. In critical time, please self-check every morning in an environment with clean air.

Serious excellent advice by Japanese doctors treating COVID-19 cases: Everyone should ensure your mouth & throat are moist, never dry. Take a few sips of water every 15 minutes at least. Why? Even if the virus gets into your mouth, drinking water or other liquids will wash them down through your throat and into the stomach. Once there, your stomach acid will kill all the virus. If you don’t drink enough water more regularly, the virus can enter your windpipe and into the lungs. That’s very dangerous.

1. If you have a runny nose and sputum, you have a common cold

2. Coronavirus pneumonia is a dry cough with no runny nose.

3. This new virus is not heat-resistant and will be killed by a temperature of just 26/27 degrees. It hates the Sun.

4. If someone sneezes with it, it takes about 10 feet before it drops to the ground and is no longer airborne.

5. If it drops on a metal surface it will live for at least 12 hours – so if you come into contact with any metal surface – wash your hands as soon as you can with a bacterial soap. 6. On fabric it can survive for 6-12 hours. normal laundry detergent will kill it.

7. Drinking warm water is effective for all viruses. Try not to drink liquids with ice.

8. Wash your hands frequently as the virus can only live on your hands for 5-10 minutes, but – a lot can happen during that time – you can rub your eyes, pick your nose unwittingly and so on.

9. You should also gargle as a prevention. A simple solution of salt in warm water will suffice.

10. Can’t emphasis enough – drink plenty of water!


1. It will first infect the throat, so you’ll have a sore throat lasting 3/4 days

2. The virus then blends into a nasal fluid that enters the trachea and then the lungs, causing pneumonia. This takes about 5/6 days further.

3. With the pneumonia comes high fever and difficulty in breathing.

4. The nasal congestion is not like the normal kind. You feel like you’re drowning. It’s imperative you then seek immediate attention.

What in the world …?

Change is not new to the modern era.  Shocks have become commonplace.  The threat of war is dulled.  The nuclear threat is muted.

We all like stability.  And we go about our daily lives in as normal a way as possible.  We might even ignore worsening crises, as does the proverbial frog in boiling water.

So, even though a sense of foreboding crept over me at the beginning of the year, even though my conscience prodded me to speak up, I just kept quiet. While I’ve known system change is coming for a couple of decades, timing has been impossible to predict in the short term, though it is clearly coming in the next decades.  But in January I started to feel that humanity is now in the end-game: either we grow-up or we regress.

My perspective is unusual. A diverse lifestyle allows me to tune in to global events and humanity’s behaviour, while being rooted in the soil and growing food. This gives a unique, big picture perspective on the patterns in nature, the cosmic rhythm as I call it, which is naturally obscured to the casual observer. The big picture view is far removed from our daily lives but how the world works and the choices we make every day are connected and increasingly so.

Rising concerns that change is accelerating rapidly started with a rather discombobulated event in early December, A Vision of the Future, which proved productive and concluded that change is coming fast and planning for it is not possible, but being prepared is.  This has influenced our strategic perspective since.

Then, in January as we recovered from the holiday season, we heard of the murder of an Iranian general at Baghdad airport by US President Trump.  It seemed surreal.  That sense of mesmerised concern continued as Trump and Netanyahu announced a “peace plan” for the Middle East which proposed taking more liberty from non-Jewish people.

Then the impeachment trial was a farce.

Meanwhile thousands continue to suffer and die because of war, starvation or simply murder by incumbent regimes …

Soon, the flu flew in to the news.  It was bad from the beginning.  How could you tell?  Because China locked down a city of 11 million people, Wuhan, overnight. And then built a full service hospital in a week.  The real lesson was that there is no way anyone can match China for mobilisation of people and resources.  Too much complacency and distraction spread by greedy millionaires and politicians has got in the way of a common vision for collaboration.  And that’s beginning to show as covid-19 runs around the world because symptoms are not displayed for two weeks after contracting the virus so you can have it and seem fine and travel around … Every major airport is probably full of it …

But it’s not the flu that’s going to get us.  That’s just a symptom of our disease.

Humanity is suffering from a terminal disease.  Decadence.

Our society is over-ripe and beginning to decay.  There are many looking for rejuvenation and many who are showing the possibilities.  But the voices for status quo are loud, louder than they have been for a long time.  It is a crescendo.  Even as the wave of democratic socialism rises to show how people can live together without killing, without suffering, with each other, with nature.  But that wave of enlightened change might yet break upon the rocks of intransigent capitalism so that we regress again to wilder ways. 

Even the terms “social democracy” and “capitalism” belie the phenomenon: One is looking for a democratic social organisation of communities, the other a community ordered by who owns the capital. 

As a graduate of Wharton and IMD, two pre-eminent business education institutions, it is embarrassing to be so unaware of the reality of what we capitalists do.  Capitalists are merely the progeny of slavery and feudalism – slightly less obvious, but still only caring about the control of stuff and people.  There is no room for humanity in that model. 

There might be room for transhumanism in the capitalist system. We are rushing to implement artificial intelligence, robotics and global data as integrated super-androids, cyborgs etc.  But that trajectory must soon exclude the human element.  The attachment of mechanical and silicone appendages to the brain can only limit the potential of consciousness to emerge, just as the illusion of scarcity is used to limit our values to base instincts of greed and fear.  And, just in case ethics is of interest to you, it is questionable that conciousness and with it morality can exist in a silicon system (as opposed to a carbon based organism).

To see the dynamic at play demands a big picture perspective .  Luckily we have the big picture model in ourselves.  Those who have read a bit of psychology might have come across Mazlow’s hierarchy of needs.  That is a model showing a natural progression of values from survival needs to safety needs to security needs to transformational needs to community needs.  There are numerous other models reflecting the same dynamic and, as you can see, slavery, feudalism, capitalism, socialism, fit the pattern too. 

However, it is NOT INEVITABLE that humanity will progress before it regresses.  That kind of thinking is human-centric, which is not how the universe works.  The universe follows natural law which is reflected in all of existence and does not put humans (let alone men!) at the centre, pinnacle or focus.  Rather, in order to progress we must choose to behave differently.

That is the great battle that now wages around the world as people look for answers to personal, yet universal, questions.  Like “Why can’t I make a living?” “Why can’t we get on?” “Why are they taking stuff I don’t have?” …

So what will happen?

Perhaps nothing much this year, though maybe.  And if not this year, soon.  Time has run out.  It’s not about climate change.  It’s not about politics.  It’s not about economics.  It’s not about religion. It’s about energy.

It’s about the energy we share when we love or hate, but right now, it’s about the energy we demand to fuel our decadence. That energy is the currency of the biosphere, the currency of life, and we’ve raped it for 300 years. The oil addiction must end.

Do you think oil will run out?

(It will.)


Most people say between 10 and 50 years, some saying system breakdown will occur first.  50 years is the oil industry’s estimate. I think that’s a self-serving over-estimate: “Peak-oil” is not mentioned because it’s passed and “climate breakdown” takes the headlines instead to distract us. Oil-heads know the tank is empty.

Any way if there’s zero oil in 50 years, we’ll feel the pinch long before.

There is evidence to suggest it will run out much sooner (including analysis from inside the oil industry).  You can make your own guess and do your own “what if?”.  20 years is my horizon.  And we’re feeling the pressure now, even if there appears to be an oil inventory glut … When it comes the stresses will be extraordinary because most of our conveniences depend upon oil, like the washers in your household plumbing and car to the screens of your phone and TV.  There’ll be no more plane delivered fresh beans from Africa or South America.  Life will resort to the old ways, unless we’ve restructured systems, which seems a long way off …

Even 20 years is far off.  What about now?

The battle will continue as the titans of capitalism resist the need to open systems, collaborate and care for nature.  They have the resources.  They have the evidence of current practice.  They have the power of vested interests. They have the strength of ignorance and selfishness. And it is always the altruistic who are martyred first, often for no good end.  For most of us, we choose sides: to continue in the same divisive ways, follow the “success” stories, do what we’re told; or to change. 

Change means looking for answers, informing oneself, collaborating and nurturing altruism.  The downside of change is finding answers (which are increasingly available) and implementing them (increasingly easy to do) which demand that you let go of what you’ve been told in order to recognise the truth that you feel in yourself.  The upside is remembering what life is about and finding there’s a chance of living again. So, take a breath, think about your challenges and let your consciousness find your flow.

What’s up this new year …

Kung hei fat choi! This traditional Cantonese greeting means “May you have great wealth!” and is expressed at Chinese new year often followed by Lai see dow loi, meaning “Give me me lucky money” ;-). 

There are many new years celebrated around the world starting from October (eg Divali in India) to the ancient Babylonian new year, Akitu, celebrated at the first new moon after the spring equinox (i.e. around March).  Our focus is usually on the solstice, but, hey, any excuse for a gathering of fun is welcome 😉 .

Here’s a quick round-up at the beginning of this solar cycle …

Thank you to everyone who joined our Walk in the Woods on 29 December.  Niall, generous as ever, lifted our spirits with a shot of whiskey to toast the new year!  Then, Richard and Jaspar, who had spent the previous day hacking at the brambles, led us all through the woods.  It was a glorious day as the lovely photos from Milena on facebook show.

in the meantime, here are a few of our snaps scratched from a video
Continue reading What’s up this new year …

Impeachment 3.0

…part of the problem is that we think its about the election.
It’s not.
It’s simple. He betrayed a US citizen. He connived with the head of state of a foreign country against a US citizen. Could’ve been anyone. Could be you, one day, Mitch. No, it’s not good. I don’t want to be in that gang, whoever they are whatever they stand for. Lethal.

Of course Mitch knows his gang’s days are numbered. And that’s why he’s twisting it for all it’s worth. He’s old. Maybe he’ll last a decade or so. But that’s the maximum widow in which system breakdown will result in chaos.

America is only one example of where system transition is burgeoning to break out.

People like Mitch choose how it happens. He’s chosen the volatile path.
People put up with the boot on their neck up to a point. And the inmates outnumber the wardens, Mitch.

So if you want to do the right thing the right way, point out that The Impeachment Story is not about politics, not about the upcoming Presidential election.

No. It’s not about that.

It’s simple. He betrayed a US citizen. He connived with the head of state of a foreign country against a US citizen. Could’ve been anyone. Could be you, one day, Mitch. No, it’s not good. I don’t want to be in that gang, whoever they are whatever they stand for. Lethal.

And there are loads of people like that around the world dividing one against another. They are lethal. And they are dividing us all with violent rhetoric.

Shame really.

We could choose another path. But we haven’t so far. And the signs have been thick and strong since 4 April 1968.

Time for you to change course, dear reader? Even if the system hasn’t, yet.

Impeachment – There is a problem.

There is a problem.

Trump did nothing wrong.

That’s how Mitch and friends see it.

Put yourself in their shoes and you can see with their eyes.

They all would have done the same. They would have protected their interests. Why look after other people instead of yourself, after all?

The people supporting Trump believe that people, their people, agree with them.

They are right.

Everyone who supports Trump would have done the same thing.
They would have demanded a favour (blacken the name of their enemy – Biden) when they offered charity to a stranger (aid to Ukraine).

Now, think about what’s going to happen?

Continue reading Impeachment – There is a problem.

Unplanned and Unexpected – A Vision of the Future

Life’s journey has no beginning or end yet events, like seasons and birthdays, mark its progress. So, in anticipation of astraea turning 20, and to say “thank you” to all the people who had helped us along the way, we thought about having an exposition of our work and a party.

Many people around the world have helped and supported us, so, while we would gather here at Ballin Temple, we wanted to share with everyone who couldn’t come. We planned to broadcast the event on the web.

We planned to share a broad, experiential perspective on our adventure over the past two decades. We’d give a walk around the vegetable plots, tool shed and so on offering little demos such as digging, harvesting, chainsawing, splitting logs and so on. Then we’d have a chat in The Tent on big picture perspectives like holonics, metaphysical dynamics, money, nature, consciousness and more. Followed by “tea” and chat (to include drinks, snacks and music).

Continue reading Unplanned and Unexpected – A Vision of the Future

Marching past paradise

The following piece comes from Media Lens. It combines the magic of legends with the reality of today. Perhaps it will help you look up from the rush to decadence and notice the paradise you can enjoy. To get a glimpse of paradise visit Ballin Temple where the air is fresh, the water clean and the people lend a hand …

This is most of David Edwards’ Cogitation: Imperial Ambition – Expanding Selves, Shrinking Planet. Enjoy!

Meeting With A Mystic Madman

The great emperor Bahramshah, the Sultan of Ghazna, was moving with his army to conquer India; at his side, Hakim Sanai, the renowned court poet. The army was in a hurry, as armies always are – the time was right, but short, for conquest.

And yet, at some strange moment, riding past a great walled garden, or ‘firdaus’ (the origin of the word ‘paradise’), something happened: the Sultan stopped. It was impossible to do otherwise. The Indian mystic and master story-teller Osho takes up the tale:

‘The sound of singing coming from the garden caught the Sultan’s attention. He was a lover of music, but he had never heard something like this. He had great musicians in his court and great singers and dancers, but nothing to be compared with this. The sound of singing and the music and the dance – he had only heard it from outside, but he had to order the army to stop.

‘It was so ecstatic. The very sound of the dance and the music and the singing was psychedelic, as if wine was pouring into him: the Sultan became drunk. The phenomenon appeared not to be of this world. Something of the beyond was certainly in it: something of the sky trying to reach the earth, something from the unknown trying to commune with the known. He had to stop to listen to it.’ (‘Unio Mystica, Volume 1, Discourses on the Sufi Mystic, Hakim Sanai,’ talks given from 01/11/78 to 10/11/78)

We can imagine the scene: the enchanted emperor, his impatient army stretching back as far as the eye can see. Throughout history, it has always been the same story – huge effort expended on a cause that, at the time, seemed so vital, so just, worth any cost.

Continue reading Marching past paradise

We’re just not smart enough.

Let’s take our leader, Donald J.

He grabs pussy. We allow it.

Let’s take another leader, …

OK there are a couple who are thinking. Ahern. Merkel.

But too many megalomaniacs.

And we allow it.

When did we stop thinking?

When did we stop caring?

When did we give up?

It’s not about them. It’s about all of us. It’s about who we are, who we might be, who we might have been? That sounds final.

Is there time to change?

Maybe it’s just that we’re not being who we want to be. Maybe we could be who we want to be. More than who we are.

Change while we can. Change while you can.

Take a breath, and take a step in the right direction.

We are smart enough. We need to think.

Fossil Free Food

There’s no such thing.

Everyone knows that fuel is used to grow our food and that petrochemicals are used to feed and protect food. But it’s probably worse than we realise. Most food has more fossil fuel energy in it than natural, current energy. It takes about 10 fossil fuel calories to produce and transport each food calorie in the average American diet. That’s about three times as much fossil fuel as we spend on transport.

We’ve been trying to take fossil fuel out of food we grow here for a couple of decades now. If you’re realistic about it, there’s hardly any chance to make fossil free food these days. In the garden here we make a pretty good attempt. There are organic or self-grown seeds, no sprays, no artificial fertiliser, etc. We do use a two-wheel tractor (diesel so can use biodiesel), chainsaws, cutters, mowers etc, but we use a lot of Tommy Power!

There are always fossil fuels involved somewhere. It’s hard to avoid. Starting with me. I eat food that comes in a bag. Paper or plastic that bag was made with energy from fossil fuel. And of course I drove to town to pick it up, and it came to town on a big truck running on fossil fuel. And the food was made almost entirely with fossil fuels – big tractors (possibly with auto-satellite drive), loads of chemical fertiliser, pesticide, herbicide, transport, sorting (by machine) etc etc The saga of our reliance on, our addiction to, fossil fuel continues. But if you want food with less fossil in it, buy local, organic, or grow your own. 😉

Where the rubber hits the road, or the spade hits the soil, we do a pretty good job. We use a lot of physical effort, sowing, weeding, harvesting. Here is a little glimpse of what it’s like to grow natural food avoiding fossil fuel and fossil chemicals.

There are three tools on show here: spade, 3 prong hoe, and swivel hoe (aka hoop/stirrup/oscillating hoe).

The spade, being used to dig and turn between rows of carrots. The ground in the patch is very weedy because it was broken, turned and planted for the first time this year. (The ground above and below has been cultivated for over a decade.) You can see the physical effort and technique employed. You can get an idea of the rate of progress – much slower than a big ol’ tractor! But no fossil fuels are being burned and no chemical sprays are killing the soil.

The 3 pronged hoe is being used to drag away the couch grass, and other weeds turned over by the spade.

The swivel hoe … ahh the swivel hoe. What would we do without the swivel hoe? It was one of the first tools we bought 20 years ago when we started. We have a 175mm (used in the clips) and 125mm. They are still going strong. The blades and handles wear out. We’ve replaced the handle on the 125 but had to use a broom handle replacement. The 175 handle is still original and we like it because it’s long and has a concave taper which enhances its handling. We replaced blades on both. (Check Dunmore Country School for them if you’re in Ireland.)

The clips are an example of light weeding potatoes, weeding tomatoes in the greenhouse and one of heavy weeding along the back wall of the greenhouse.

In 1999 we guessed that we had 20 years to change systems if natural cycles were to be protected from anthropomorphic destruction. Our guess was pretty good – nothing changed and here we are with climate breakdown …

Now we reckon we’ve got 20 years of fossil fuels left. They’ll always be around, but only in small quantities, as was the case before the industrial revolution. Why do we think they’ll run out? Because we passed peak oil some years ago and consumption is increasing. When everyone realises oil is running out, things are going to be very difficult as food supplies will shrink, transport capacity will shrivel and no one has any useful life skills any more – like carpentry, gardening, metallurgy, … Infrastructure will disintegrate as all those little plastic washers, valve, osmotic barriers etc which allow high tech to function will not be available …

So in the meantime, we’re enjoying growing fossil free food and eating and sharing it.

Time to get a swivel hoe?